In a great move to deepen its commitment to diversity and inclusivity, and show support for the anti-racist movement, Mercedes has announced that it will run a new black livery in the delayed Formula One 2020 season.
Famously known as Silver Arrows, the company has maintained a silver colour scheme since over nine decades.
“Racism and discrimination have no place in our society, our sport or our team: this is a core belief of Mercedes,” said Team Principal Toto Wolff. “But having the right beliefs and the right mindset isn’t enough if we remain silent.
“We wish to use our voice and our global platform to speak up for respect and equality, and the Silver Arrow will race in black for the entire 2020 season to show our commitment to greater diversity within our team and our sport.”
“We will not shy away from our weaknesses in this area, nor from the progress we must still make; our livery is our public pledge to take positive action,” continued Wolff. “We intend to find and attract the very best talents from the broadest possible range of backgrounds, and to creative credible pathways for them to reach our sport, in order to build a stronger and more diverse team in the future.”
Following the announcement, the cars of World Champion Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas’s will be switched to black. Further, the two drivers will race in black overalls with an adapted helmet design. The call to ‘End Racism’ will feature on the halo of Mercedes cars, while the united F1 initiative #WeRaceAsOne will be featured of the mirrors of the W11.
Currently, only 3 per cent of the workforce of Mercedes identifies as belonging to minority ethnic groups while a mere 12 per cent employees are women. Bearing this in mind, the organization has also pledged to announce a diversity and inclusion program before the current season ends.
Meanwhile, Mercedes driver and current world champion Lewis Hamilton also announced that he would set up a commission in collaboration with the Royal Academy of Engineering to support and increase black participation in motorsport.
“I have personally experienced racism in my life and seen my family and friends experience racism, and I am speaking from the heart when I appeal for change,” he said.
He added, “It’s so important that we seize this moment and use it to educate ourselves, whether you are an individual, brand or company to make real meaningful changes when it comes to ensuring equality and inclusivity.”
This is certainly a positive change from one of the biggest brands in motor racing. Do you agree?